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Category: Punjabi Market

Boba Monster

This afternoon I was at “Boba Monster” checking off another ice tea off my list. For Vancouver Foodster’s ice tea challenge, this fun cafe is offering more than you can chew, literally. Located across the street from a high school this shop caters to its community. With their cutesy monster logo, a shelf of boardgames and electronic dart machines in the corner; they invited you in to drink, sit, and linger. Although during our stay we saw many more take their sealed cups to go.

Their ice tea entry was their best seller, the “Boba Monster Milk Tea”, a traditional milk tea with extra drink toppings. More to chew than just the traditional pearls. In the full cup was a generous helping of grass jelly, egg pudding, and even a scoop of vanilla ice cream. This one was definitely fan service to their larger teenage customer base. The clerks behind the counter even admitted to serving their drinks sweater than normal due to the requests of said customers. Although they made a point to mention that they are also able to sweeten or dilute any cup to your preference. They make their own grass and egg jelly in house, making sure to do so with no additional sugars. They even use herbal powers to get more of the grass jelly taste out. I won’t be going more into how the drink tasted here, given that the competition is still running. Instead I ask that you check back to my blog after August 5th, to see how I judged each beverage competing.

“Boba Monster” allows you to customize your own drink starting from $4. You choose your flavours between creamy, fruity, fresh fruit, or ice cream. Each category offering a handful of options including passion fruit, black sesame, kiwi, mocha, and hedgehog. Next you choose your base between a green tea or black tea base. But they also give you the option of having no tea. This is ideal for younger kids who need to go caffeine-free, or my guests who preferred their bubble tea like a blended, cake-like dessert. After, you choose the style in which you want your drink prepared, either shaken with ice or blended into a slush. And lastly you choose your topping(s), if any. They used the term “topping” to describe the bits and bobs at the bottom of your drink in which you slurped up through a straw. Red bean, popping juice pearls, lychee jelly, and even miniature tapioca pearls; to name a few.

Today I visited with two grown adults, not familiar with bubble tea and the nuances of chewing their drink. Therefore the sensation and extra textures was not as enjoyable to them, as it was just so foreign. I often find this the case for many first time bubble tea drinkers. Instead they preferred the other two drinks we tried below, claiming it to be more like dessert in a cup.

We would order off their “top 8” menu. Playing it safe with number 3 and 5. Number 3 is their “mango sago”, a creamy smoothie with whipped cream, real mango chunks, mango stars, and sago. It was like drinking a mango mousse cake, as fun to scoop as it was to sip. Very bold in its mango sweetness.

The “strawberry cheesecake” had mango stars and tangy juice filled pearls that popped when you bit down. It was topped with whipped cream, a strawberry drizzle, a fresh strawberry, and chunks of actual cheesecake. The drink was blended with strawberry cheesecake flavoured ice cream from local purveyor of ice cream: “Mario’s Gelato”. They prepared a special blend just for “Boba Monster” and their 5th most popular drink special. Like the mango, this too you drank in thick. It was a creamy milkshake with jelly chunks to keep bites interesting.

 

Would I come back? – Yes.
Would I line up for it? – Yes.
Would I recommend it? – Yes.
Would I suggest this to someone visiting from out of town? – No.
They are a great bubble tea place for the area. They cater to their customers with customizable and creative drinks, as well offering them a comfortable place to enjoy their specialty beverages within. Don’t deny your cravings.

 

BOBA MONSTER
5766 Fraser Street, Vancouver BC
778-838-9043
Boba Monster Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Dosa Hut

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We were here at “Dosa Hut” to try their Indian taco. This was the starting point and where we registered for the annual Vancouver “taco crawl”. This is a celebration of tacos: the traditional, and any dough folding around ingredients savoury and/or sweet. And this festive fun was brought to the community by “Vancouver Fooster”: local food lover, food podcast host, and regular organizer of such crawls. I would later learn that this, and the four other restaurants on this crawl were favoured by our event organizer. He had partnered up with these businesses in order to help highlight them. It worked, because I don’t think I would find myself here on this day, or at all, if it weren’t for this event.

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The taco crawl is an adventure in dining. You pay a fee to participate and shuttle yourself around from stop to stop. The goal is to try each taco that each restaurant puts forth between 7-10pm, on this day. We foolishly thought transiting would get us around in time, we were wrong. Thankfully my benefactor, “Picky Diner” was one of the judges, and he was friends with the man behind “Vancouver Foodster”. And therefore we ended up tagging along as his plus one and two, as “the Foodster” cruised around the city eating himself. Not only were we gifted with a more reliable mode of transportation, but “Vancouver Foodster” became our unofficial tour guide in the process. He regaled us with his dining tales, and went over the regular menus of each destination. Most of our stops were serving tacos that they other wise wouldn’t offer.

As the starting point, and the furthest stop from all the others in the city, “Dosa Hut” was by far the busiest. Not only did they seat those attending the crawl, but their regular clientele found this Wednesday a good time to visit as well. Luckily those attending the crawl made eating a race, and one after another they were seated and done, moving on to the next destination.

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We were however, still left waiting at the door for sometime. We were left memorized by the water feature separating foyer and the dining area like a curtain. It was an eye catching strobe of colour in neons yellow, green, blue, and flashing reds. The lights were the backdrop to a maze of tiny bubbles that continuously ascended upwards, wriggling their way past circular stoppers. It was interesting, but a bit kitschy with the fake flowers snaking around its frame.

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The rest of the restaurant was more simple, and most practical. Just the furniture that they needed, and a curtain to separate kitchen from the front of house. The only thing that remotely ran close to Indian decor was the one painting of a women in a traditional sari, hanging above our seat. There was a bar, and we had planned to settle in with a drink, however, there was actually no alcohol behind it.

When it came time to order, it was between a chicken or vegetarian option. Two of us, allowed us to try one of each. Not surprisingly, both took some time to come. Given the extra business that they saw today, I could only imagine the state of the kitchen. They didn’t anticipate the traffic and was left trying to push taco crawlers in and out, as well as fulfill the larger orders of their regular clientele. This event would have gone smoother had they blocked time off for taco diners, and served everyone else after.

Their South Indian tacos were incredibly flavourful. This would be our favourite of the night with its its crisp dosa shell encasing fragrant filling. I liked the vegetable version, and “The Diner” preferred his choice of the the chicken.

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The vegetable dosa taco didn’t feel like it lacked anything. It was a mix of peas, carrot, red onion, and cilantro. Its side salad came with a dollop of tangy BBQ-like sauce, this gave it some tang. And the pile of chips under it, offered even more crunch.

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The chicken tasted similar, but with a hint of curry added. I didn’t really taste or got to see much of the chicken mixed in with the lumpy chunks of potato. But not that it was needed, it tasted amazing either way.

 

Would I come back? – Yes.
Would I line up for it? – No.
Would I recommend it? – Yes.
Would I suggest this to someone visiting from out of town? – No.
I have never had anything like this, and based on it, I can definitely see myself coming back to try more of what they offered. And this includes on of the largest dosas I have ever seen. I was lusting after it, as it was paraded past our table and delivered to another. But today would not be the day, as we were off to our next taco destination. From Fraser onward to Cambie. Don’t deny your cravings.

 

DOSA HUT
7233 Fraser Street, Vancouver BC, V5X 1R7
604-566-3111
Dosa Hut Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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